Data Visualization

Data visualization is the graphic representation of data so that analysts, readers, clients, and stakeholders can more easily see the implications of the raw data. Data visualization can also refer to the technique of communicating information by encoding data in a visual way through the use of lines, bars, and points.

Data visualization can be a standalone product. It is also often part of business intelligence or analytics software, and is commonly included in business applications like CRM and even spreadsheets.

With the overwhelming amount of data businesses aggregate every day, data visualization makes it easier to interpret data and avoid confusion. It enables users to see analytics in a visual way to understand concepts or identify new patterns. Data visualization is more aligned with the way the human brain processes information by using charts and graphs, which are easier to understand than poring over reports and spreadsheets.

Benefits and uses of data visualization

Data visualization is useful to organizations regardless of size, industry, and type. Here are some common uses.

To understand information easily

Businesses are able to see large amounts of data in a clear and cohesive way through graphical representations of information. When using data visualization, patterns and relationships between ideas and concepts are more easily spotted and understood.

To identify emerging trends

Business competition is always tough, and business owners need to try to spot emerging trends before other companies do. Data visualization lets them see outliers that affect customer churn and product quality and addresses issues before they become bigger problems.

To communicate

When new insights from visual analytics are uncovered, it is important for data scientists to communicate those to others. By using data visualization, non-data scientists can still grasp the information and understand the message more quickly.

Types of graphs for data visualization

Users can mix and match different graphs to communicate the message faster. However, using only one at a time may also be as effective. Here are some common options available in data visualization software:

  • Bar graph

  • Line graph

  • Pie chart

  • Waterfall chart

  • Histogram

  • Maps

Webopedia Staff
Webopedia Staff
Since 1995, more than 100 tech experts and researchers have kept Webopedia’s definitions, articles, and study guides up to date. For more information on current editorial staff, please visit our About page.

Top Articles

The Complete List of 1500+ Common Text Abbreviations & Acronyms

UPDATED: This article was updated April 6, 2021 by Web Webster   From A3 to ZZZ we list 1,559 text message and online chat abbreviations to...

How to Create a Website Shortcut on Your Desktop

UPDATED: This article was updated April 6, 2021 by Web Webster   This Webopedia guide will show you how to create a desktop shortcut to a...

Windows Operating System History & Versions

The Windows operating system (Windows OS) refers to a family of operating systems developed by Microsoft Corporation. We look at the history of Windows...

What are the 5 Generations of Computers?

UPDATED: This article was updated on April 6, 2021 by Web Webster   Learn about each of the 5 generations of computers and major technology developments...

Random Access Memory (RAM)...

UPDATED: This article Updated April 6, 2021 by Web Webster   Random Access Memory (RAM)...

OEM – original equipment...

UPDATED: This article was updated April 6, 2021 by Web Webster OEM (pronounced as...

Best ERP Software for...

UPDATED: This page was updated April 6, 2021 by Web Webster   Enterprise resource planning...